What reason do you need to get a divorce in Texas?

Despite the best intentions of spouses to stay together and make a marriage work, the truth is that some marriages are beyond repair. Although divorce is not an easy decision to make, sometimes it is the best decision considering the state of the marriage. Like many other states, Texas recognizes both no-fault and fault-based reasons for ending a marriage. According to the Texas Family Law Code, the state will grant a divorce based on the following seven grounds:

  1. Insupportability: This is the only grounds for a no-fault divorce in Texas. Insupportability means that the marriage has dissolved to the point where the spouses can reach no reconciliation. If two spouses are in constant conflict and cannot find common ground on which to rebuild their union, either of the spouses may petition the court for a divorce.
  2. Cruelty: If your spouse has a history of abusing you or your children, and it has reached the point where you can no longer live with that person, then you can claim cruelty as a basis for your divorce.
  3. Adultery: If your spouse has cheated on you, you can file for divorce on the grounds of adultery.
  4. Felony conviction: If your spouse was convicted of a felony and sentenced to prison for a year or more, the court may grant you a divorce. However, if your testimony lead to your spouse’s conviction, the court may not grant you a divorce.
  5. Abandonment: If your spouse left you and your family with the intent to abandon you and has stayed away for a year or more, then you may file for divorce on this ground.
  6. Living apart: If you and your spouse have lived apart for three years or more, you may petition for a divorce.
  7. Confined to a mental hospital: If your spouse has been confined to a mental hospital, either in Texas or another state, for three years or more, and the condition of his or her mental disorder is such that no hope exists for a real and ongoing recovery, you can petition the court to dissolve your marriage.

Whether based on the actions of your spouse or simply because you and your spouse have grown apart, making the decision to divorce is not easy. Regardless of the reasons, the process of dissolving a marriage can be challenging on many different fronts. You will have a lot to think about and work through as the process unfolds, and you should act alongside an experienced family law attorney who will protect your best interests as well as those of your family.